Earlier today we shared five boys at the Meet of Champions whose impressive performances may have gotten lost in the shuttle.
You can find that here.
Now we have five performances by South Jersey athletes in the girls Meet of Champions that you might have missed.
Jewel Ash, Eastern, 200-, 400-meter runs: Ash, an Eastern senior, quietly had a very strong double Sunday with a PR 25.09 for third in the 200 and another PR 57.59 for fifth in the 400. Her 200 time is fastest by an Eastern girl indoors since Jennifer Jackson ran 24.5 in 2003. Her 400 time is fastest by an Eastern girl indoors since Olympic gold medalist English Gardner ran 56.29 at the 2007 Meet of Champions. Ash was the only girl to place in the top six in both the 200 and 400.
Kelsey Niglio, Cherokee, 800-meter run: The top South Jersey freshman this indoor season in the 800 and No. 2 in the state, behind only Jenai Berry of Scotch Plains, who ran 2:16.92 for fifth at the M-of-C. Niglio took more than five seconds off her PR of 2:23.17 from sectionals with her big M-of-C race. She’s fastest South Jersey freshman since Gabbi Kirsch of Williamstown ran 2:16.60 in 2015 and Cherokee’s fastest indoor 800 runner since Lisa Burkholder ran 2:17.23 at 2004 Easterns.
Hailey Tabar, Clearview, 800-meter run: That 800 was full of PRs. Clearview senior Hailey Tabar lowered her PR from 2:21.14 from last year’s state meet to 2:18.72 at the M-of-C, No. 5 in South Jersey this year and the fastest by a Clearview girl in at least 15 years. I need to look up how fast Carrie Thompson ran in the early 1990s. Time to go through old New Jersey Track annuals in the garage!
Alilya Rae Garozzo, Paul VI, Meredith Updike, Cinnaminson, 55-meter hurdles: Garozzo and Updike have had some great battles all year, so it shouldn’t have been surprising that they finished 2-100ths of a second apart in the Meet of Champions final. Garozzo took fourth in 8.27 and Updike fifth in 8.29 in a race won by Eastern’s Jailya Ash in 8.03. Garozzo will run collegiately at Penn and Updike at Rutgers.
Karissa Watson, Williamstown, long jump: Watson took fourth in the long jump at the M-of-C with a personal-best 18-2 1/4, the best indoor jump by a Gloucester County girl since Tacquaya Tobias hit 18-5 1/4 at Easterns in 2011. Her jump is No. 4 in Gloucester County history, behind Shelly Bailey of Woodbury [18-7 1/4 in 1982], Tisifinee Taylor of Woodbury [18-6 1/2 in 2002] and Tobias. Watson, also a 5-2 high jumper, has long jumped as far as 18-10 1/2 outdoors at the Rowland Relays, but her 18-2 1/4 surpassed her previous indoor PR of 17-6 1/2 from Ocean Breeze earlier this month.